When we visited the Franklin Institute last weekend to see their special Star Wars exhibit, I tried out a new computer activity in the Franklin Gallery, which is based on the scientific experiments and inventions of Benjamin Franklin.
The computer allowed you to drag words to complete a famous saying, which the computer then printed out. I was feeling silly, so I came up with, "An pound of prevention is worth a yard of cure."
When I picked mine up from the printer, I discovered three others that had been left behind. Someone else had been similarly nonsensical, producing the saying, "An leg of prevention is worth a tree of cure."
A similar activity at the same computer allowed you to fill in pictures to complete a different famous Franklin saying. The first was done by somebody who was clearly trying to get it correct, the saying being "Early to bed and early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise." For "bed," they used an image of a bed; for "rise," an image of a rising sun; for "healthy," an image of a runner crossing the finish line; for "wealthy," a stack of money; and for "wise," what appears to be a person holding a book.
The final person went for the surreal, using an image of coffins instead of the word "bed," a man’s brain instead of the word "rise," a bee for "healthy," a runner crossing the finish line for "wealthy," and a monk with his finger to his lips for "wise."
The way I read it, the saying now says, "Early to death and early to thought makes a man honeyed, healthy and religious." Or something like that.
Something tells me that if Franklin had published these sayings in his almanac, he would have sold far fewer copies.
I’m not the only person who appreciates non sequiturs.